Ananda Foods: The UK Family Run Business Producing Vegan Marshmallows

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Every vegan knows what is like to find the plant-based version of a treat that traditionally contains animal by-products. It is always a big surprise, especially when it is about food belonging to our childhood. Ananda Foods, a small family-ran business from Derbyshire UK has managed to veganise a popular childhood favorite, Marshmallows. 

Meat substitutes are becoming more and more mainstream, thanks to small businesses and multinationals who have decided to invest in that field, but finding vegan sweets can still be challenging. Most of the times, when reading a restaurant menu, we can see many vegan options in terms of main dishes and sides. However, dessert is usually a critical point, as it seems that its preparation requires more research. 

Sometimes, the simpler the original sweet, the more complicated the vegan recipe. Marshmallows, for instance, are not the easiest food to veganise.  As  a matter of fact, the main ingredient of these soft candies is gelatine, which ‘is a protein obtained by boiling skin, tendons, ligaments, and/or bones with water. It is usually obtained from cows or pigs’. Surprisingly, this raw material is used at the base of many jellies, mousses and cakes. There are several vegan alternatives to animal-by gelatine, like agar agar and pectin, but each substitute is different and serves different purposes. 

Some years ago, Amanda from Derbyshire (UK) managed to find the perfect vegan recipe Ananda Foods Award for the fluffiest candies ever. Her products are not only cruelty-free, but some are even gluten-free, for the joy of those people who suffer from celiac disease or a gluten intolerance. Her company, ‘Ananda Foods’, offer a wide range of classic and special vegan marshmallows. Different flavors are available such as; caramel, coconut or strawberry, and, on top of all these treats, they even produce filled vegan marshmallows covered with chocolate. Amanda, the founder of Ananda’s Food, kindly agreed to tell us more about her vegan business, explaining our readers why their vegan marshmallows are unique. 

What inspired you to produce vegan marshmallows? 

We started our business in 2008. We had three small children (aged 4, 6, and 8) and we wanted to toast marshmallows on Bonfire night. We were a vegetarian family and could not find any gelatine free marshmallows to toast. We embarked on making our own and gifted some to our local health food store. They loved them and encouraged us to make more as their customers were asking for them, and so our journey began.

What is your brand’s philosophy? 

‘We aspire to make quality, great tasting products for all to enjoy, without compromising on flavour. We love to bake and want to share our passion for great tasting treats without the use of animal products. If we can inspire people to lead a vegan lifestyle, then we have achieved success!’

Which are the products that your customers love the most? 

‘Our ‘Round Ups‘ are our flagship product, our vegan version of the British classic, ‘Waggon Wheel’. They combine crisp biscuit, with soft marshmallow, chunky Belgian chocolate and gooey centres.’

If you want to know more about Ananda’s vegan marshmallows (or make an order) you can visit their website here.

Valentina Nieddu
Valentina Nieddu
Valentina Nieddu is a Communication Specialist based in Italy. She graduated from the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia (Italy) in Languages for Communication in International Enterprises, with a case study about sustainable business in Europe. Valentina has been vegan since 2010, when she was only 15 years old. As a professional in the communication field, she has always tried to inform people about the reasons supporting the vegan choice, using reliable sources. In particular, she aims at telling stories about people giving their positive and personal contribution to the animal cause, so that they can inspire others. That is why she joined The Vegan Review in March 2020.